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Senate Week in Review – February 14, 2014

rhoads 02 300FRANKFORT, Ky. (2/14/14) – Dozens of bills were considered by the legislature this week.

Many received the approval of the full Senate.

Among them, several matters that would impact health care in various ways.
 
Senate Bill 103 would allow trained caregivers to administer life-saving insulin and glucagon to diabetics experiencing symptoms of hypo or hyperglycemia. Under the bill, individuals would receive written permission, training and instructions by a patient’s doctor beforehand. Kentucky has a growing number of patients with diabetes and we hope this measure will help those patients receive better care in the management of their illness.
 
Another measure aimed at helping diabetic patients would allow non-licensed school employees to administer insulin to diabetic students. Employees would follow guidelines developed by the American Diabetes Association and would receive permission and training by medical providers and parents. House Bill 98 is the first from the House of Representatives to receive full Senate approval. It follows laws passed by more than 30 other states and would better enable students to remain at their neighborhood schools for treatment during the school day.
 
An added provision of that bill would also allow trained school personnel to administer certain rescue drugs for students experiencing a seizure.
 
Senate Bill 47 would allow the Department of Public Health to report statistical data on drug-addicted newborns. The data would be anonymous and reported at a regional or county level. We feel this information is critical in considering and tracking substance abuse treatment and prevention.
 
Senate Bill 85 would expand a medical provider’s duty to report a patient’s threat of violence or harm to include those receiving outpatient mental health care. This measure is just another step in ensuring the health and safety of all Kentuckians, while still respecting the patient-provider relationship.
 
On Wednesday, many of our local officials were in Frankfort for Kentucky League of Cities Day. It was nice to be able to talk to our leaders from back home and to hear their concerns and priorities for our district. I always want input from our local officials because they are there making decisions for our community day after day and know what is needed. I appreciate all those from my district who came to Frankfort and took the time to visit with me.
 
This week was especially special because Tuesday was West Kentucky Day in Frankfort, and, as you can imagine, Western Kentucky was shining. It was nice to have citizens, business leaders and local officials from back home in Frankfort not only to meet with me and my colleagues in the Western Kentucky Caucus, but all the members of the Kentucky General Assembly. And, nobody was complaining as they sampled that delicious, mouth watering Western Kentucky barbecue prepared by some of very own restaurants. It was a good day indeed. Thanks to all those who were a part of spotlighting Western Kentucky.
 
And, speaking of Western Kentucky’s assets, I would like to note that the Marching Maroons (Madisonville-North Hopkins High School), under the direction of Randy Adams, were here this week. I was proud to honor the band on the floor of the Senate in recognition of their achievements, including earning their ninth consecutive Kentucky Education Music Association Class AAAA marching band championship.
 
The session is nearing the half-way point and work will only intensify from here. Legislation may seem slow moving at times, but the vetting process is long and hard, as it should be. We want to make sure that the laws created by our work in Frankfort are best for the people we serve. We also want to make sure you have the chance for your voice to be heard.

To leave a message for me, or any legislator, call the General Assembly’s Message Line at (800) 372-7181. You can also email me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

SurfKY News
Information provided by Jerry Rhoads

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